Turrón, Polvorones, churros, Coques de Nadal, castanyas and hot chocolate are indispensable ingredients of the Christmas period in Spain, and in particular, here in Mallorca. The best of these, as always, are those homemade or bought from your local panaderia/pastelería, trust me. If you want to buy from a biggish chain store, try buying turrón or other Christmas dulces (sweets) that look artisan-made. Those sweets may be one Euro dearer than the mass produced wares but, you can tell the difference and it will be well worth it.
Don’t forget that Christmas is not over on Boxing Day, here in Mallorca. It has barely started by then. It is not really the Twelve Days to Christmas that count here in Spain, but the Twelve Days of Christmas, starting from Noche Buena (December 24th). Well, it’s fourteen days actually, going right up to Los Reyes Santos (January 6th), with Noche Vieja and Año Nuevo somewhere in the middle. And remember that the big thing on Reyes day is the night before (January 5th), if you get my drift. The sweet to eat for Reyes here in Mallorca is the Roscón de Reyes. I’ll see if I can take a photo, nearer the time.
The Ajuntament de Palma offers guided tours at this time of year, introducing us to the Sabores de la Navidad (Christmas flavours). Guided outings are offered in either of four languages (Catalan, Castellano, English and German). Tours will include a visit to Forn Fondo (a historic pastry maker), Can Joan de s’Aigo (the best place for hot chocolate) as well as to the two monasteries, Santa Clara and Santa Magdalena, both of which specialise in making turrón, mazapán, polvorones, mantecados and cocas. Ring for an appointment if you want to taste the nuns’ sweet delights (telephone 971.720.720). I think the fee is a modest 10 €, including tasting samples. A tour is on offer in English this afternoon at 16h00, and another one on Friday, 17th, at 16h00. There will be no more tours after December 18th, though. Until Christmas time, next year, that is.
The photo (top) was taken in Palma de Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: December 7th, 2010. The time was 14:10:29. The photo (bottom) was taken in Montuïri, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: December 4th, 2010. The time was 12:41:11.